Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV
- Distributor: Sony Pictures
- Release date: 30th August 2016 Digital, 3rd October 2016 Physical
- Runtime: 1 hour 55 minutes
- Cast: Aaron Paul, Sean Bean, Lena Heady
A New World of Final Fantasy
Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV is the latest home release movie of the Final Fantasy series and follows previous entries The Spirits Within and Advent Children. Like previous movies and games in the series it bears no connection to the sibling movies bar the Final Fantasy title. It serves as both a standalone feature and also a prequel story to the highly anticipated Final Fantasy XV video game from Square Enix.
The film is a story based around two countries in the world of Eos who have been at war for 12 years – Lucis and Niflheim. The story is told from the view of the Kingsglaive, a security unit for Niflheim who are tasked at protecting the borders from attacks and monsters sent by the people of Lucis to take over the city, in particular a recruit by the name Nyx Ulric voiced by Breaking Bad star Aaron Paul.
The story is a fairly rudimental story and not overly complex by any standards. Two warring countries, one good (Niflheim), one evil (Lucis), the good guys have a magical McGuffin piece the Ring of the Lucii, the bad guys want it for themselves, big fight ensues, twists start appearing etc. The simplicity of the story works in their favour though as it allows the film to flow and excel at the parts it needs too which is the visuals.
The visuals are really where this film stands out as like all the previous games and movies it is stunning to watch and see. The cities and characters truly feel alive with the level of CGI used in this film. The fact that the majority of main characters were motion-captured for the film adds weight to them, though most where performed by different people to the actual voice actors. The summons and monsters have always been standouts for the Final Fantasy series as a whole and this film does not disappoint on that front. We get to see monsters from the series such as Ahriman as well as other fantastic beasts throughout.
Jester and the King
The voice acting for the most part is quite good even with a few minor hiccups even now and then. Aaron Paul is the true standout as Nyx, with never really being a fan of his throughout Breaking Bad I was pleasantly surprised at how well he managed to portray the main protagonist of quite an epic story.
Sean Bean plays the ruler of Niflheim King Regis who is the father to the main character of the FFXV game Noctis. We get the usual Sean Bean level of performance throughout, great character and great acting but once again a character too noble and trusting for his own good which is ultimately his downfall.
Lena Heady rounds out the main cast as Lunafreya, the former princess of Tenebrae which is one of the countries which has fallen to Lucis’ rule and she serves more as a plot piece to the story to tie the peace treaty to Niflheim and Lucis together by being the promised bride to Regis’ son Noctis. We get a few other main characters throughout like Nyx’s sidekick and close friend Libertus, Drautos the commander of the Kingsglaive and Luche who is the leader of the Kingsglaive but these characters and voice overs are far more forgettable and what let the film down in parts.
Overall it is a pretty solid film and a must watch for any Final Fantasy fan. If you’re watching this as a standalone it should be an enjoyable and quite an easy watch but if you’re planning on playing Final Fantasy XV I could not recommend watching this enough. It manages to do quite a lot of world building during its near two hours runtime and for the most part does it quite well. It may not be the most perfect film in the world or the most complex but overall it’s a fun watch and would recommend it to most.
- Visually stunning, CGI and motion capture used to great effect
- Voice acting for the most part good, Aaron Paul and Sean Bean standout roles
- Simplistic plot, story easy to follow but at the same time it effects interest in second tier characters
- Great setup to the world of Eos and Final Fantasy XV